Guide to Caravan Insurance
Now, as eager as you probably are to hit the open road and start enjoying the benefits that a caravan brings, you should probably take some time to ensure your pride and joy is adequately covered against every eventuality.
Once you have decided to take the step of insuring your caravan the next dilemma comes when you arrange the cover itself. As you get quotes you will quickly notice that prices vary massively. This is generally because the cover varies massively, so we would advise to do your research rather than just go for the cheapest price. Check what level of cover is being offered to make sure you have all the cover you require. Unfortunately, many people fall into the trap of going with cheap cover and do not realise they are not covered for all the things they expect to be covered for until it is too late.
Here at Lifesure we have tried to give you a simple, easy to understand guide to caravan insurance.
What exactly is Caravan Insurance?
Some examples of caravan insurance cover are set out in the links below
- Caravan insurance – for caravans that are towed behind another vehicle
- Static caravan insurance – for caravans that are fixed in one place, for example, at a holiday park
What are the different types of caravan cover levels?
New for old cover
If your caravan is under a certain age limit (every insurer has its own age limits, typically between 5 and 10 years) you can insure it so that if your caravan is written off, or stolen and not recovered, you will get a new caravan as a replacement.
You must ensure that the value you have insured the caravan for represents the cost of a new caravan; otherwise your policy will revert to market value should a claim occur. New for old cover will only apply in the event of a total loss claim, as if the caravan is just repaired it does not make any difference if the cover is new for old or market value.
Lifesure Offer – New for old cover up to 5 years of age from the date of manufacture on touring caravans and 10 years on static caravans.
Market value cover
This means you insure your caravan for the value it would cost to replace with a used caravan of the same make, model, age & condition. It is your job as a policy holder to ensure the value is correct at each renewal.
It is also a good idea to take plenty of photographs of your caravan, both interior & exterior – this will help prove the condition of your caravan should you need to.
Lifesure Offer – Market Value for caravans up to 20 years of age (depending on which scheme you choose).
Most companies will give you discounts for having various security devices, however, some will insist on a certain level of security so make sure you ask the insurance company what is required. Whilst they should tell you what security they want, some have been known not to.
Lifesure Offers – Minimum security requirements of a hitchlock and wheelclamp and discounts for other security measures.
We also allow a 2 hour period for the caravan to be left unattended before a hitchlock and wheelclamp needs to be fitted (Excel & Elite schemes only). This is very useful should you need stop at a service station.
Make sure you tell the insurance company about any place you are likely to keep the caravan. Many caravanners keep their caravan at home in the summer, but in storage during the winter. Unfortunately, if they sort out the insurance in the summer and they then forget to tell the company about the winter storage facilities, it could invalidate their insurance. Some companies may insist on any storage site being CaSSOA registered whilst others will give discounts for it. Again, check when getting your quotes with each company to make sure there will be no problems when you come to moving your caravan.
Lifesure Offers – Discounts for a CaSSOA registered storage compound. Our Excel Scheme offers a discounts for caravans which are permanently sited on a seasonal pitch. Please speak to one of our advisors to find out the minimum security requirements at various storage locations.
What if I want to travel abroad?
Should you wish to take your caravan outside the UK, you should ensure your policy covers you to do so, and also check how long your insurer allows under their particular policy. Most of our polices here at Lifesure offer European Cover as standard.
Lifesure Offer – Between 30 and 180 days European Cover (depending on what scheme you choose).
What if I have an accident abroad?
Should you be unfortunate enough to be involved in a collision outside the UK, then you will need to ensure that your policy covers the repatriation of your caravan (bringing your caravan back to the UK following an accident).
Lifesure Offer – If your caravan is repairable and cannot be repaired locally, we offer repatriation as standard under our Excel and Elite policies so you have one less thing to worry about!
How can I reduce my premium?
As well as receiving discounts dependent on your towing experience, most insurers will offer discounts in exchange for higher security on your caravan, typically having an alarm or tracker fitted will dramatically reduce your premium.
A tracking device will allow the police to easily locate your caravan in the event of a theft, making it much more likely to be returned to its rightful owner should it be stolen.
Lifesure Offer – Discounts for No Claims Bonus, Alarms, Trackers, Tyron Bands, CaSSOA Storage & HGV Drivers (discounts vary depends what scheme you choose).
What are the common exclusions for caravan insurance policies?
All companies have exclusions, most of the time it is obvious things such as wear and tear. However, some companies exclude certain perils that you may assume would naturally be covered. For example, some companies exclude storm damage whilst others include it as standard. You may however, find that awnings aren’t covered by storm damage, so make sure you take them down if there is a danger of strong winds.
All caravan policies will exclude use of a caravan as a permanent residency.
Generally caravan insurance will not cover valuable items such as laptops, jewellery, sports equipment etc. You should check your household cover to see if it covers items away from the home.
It is not uncommon for insurers to refuse a claim on the grounds that adequate security was not in place, for example, a claim may be refused for theft of contents unless there is forced entry or exit from the caravan.
Many touring caravan insurers will also insist on a hitchlock and wheelclamp being applied if the caravan is left unattended.
If you are planning on renting your caravan out then you will need to let your insurance company know as this will require specialist cover.
It is strongly recommended that you read through your policy documents once you accept any cover; do not wait until you need to claim. It will then be too late!
Lifesure Offers – Full storm damage cover on caravan and awnings, as well as awning cover 365 days a year as standard on all caravan schemes.
Hopefully you are now a little more clued up when it comes to insuring your caravan, however we don’t expect you to be a insurance expert – that’s what we are here for!
Feel free to give us a call if you are unsure on any aspects of caravan insurance, all you need to do is dial 01480 402470 where one of our caravan experts will be only too happy to help.